Campus News

Published by Communications and Public Affairs (519) 824-4120, Ext. 56982 or 53338

News Release

October 18, 1999

U of G to sell Cruickston property, realtor selected

The University of Guelph is selling the Cruickston property, located primarily in North Dumfries Township adjacent to Cambridge. J.J. Barnicke Limited, Canada's largest independently owned commercial real estate company, has been selected to oversee the sale.

Matthew Wilkes Keefer donated the land to the University in 1968. The property consisted of 966 acres of land, a 17,500-square-foot, 19th Century home and associated buildings, and nine other houses and farm buildings. In 1996, the University decided it could not commit the necessary resources to maintain or restore the home and sold it along with 53 acres of surrounding grounds, a number of buildings and the barn. The new owners live in the home and are painstakingly restoring it to preserve its architectural integrity.

The University retained ownership of two homes that are rented and approximately 913 acres of land, primarily leased for farming.

The University's Board of Governor's recommended selling the property last spring. The Board felt that the intention of the gift -- to advance teaching and research in agriculture -- is not being served. "The money the University is spending to maintain and manage the property is money the Board believes could be better spent supporting teaching and research -- and protecting academic quality and accessibility -- at the University of Guelph," said Simon Cooper, chair of the Board of Governor's.

The University will invest the proceeds of the sale in the Cruickston Property Fund and use the income from this fund to support agricultural teaching and research in the name of the Keefer family in perpetuity.

J. J. Barnicke Limited was selected by the Real Estate Development Committee of the Heritage Fund Board of Trustees following a request for proposals and interviews with some of Canada's leading realtors.

Contacts: Darlene Frampton, Director, Communications and Public Affairs, University of Guelph, (519) 824-4120, Ext. 3863

Sydney Hamber, SIOR, Vice President, J.J. Barnicke Limited, 1-800-737-1215, Ext. 224

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs, (519) 824-4120, Ext. 3338

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